Since Carolina Trace was established back in the seventies, there has been a community club for folks who enjoy fishing in our 315-acre Lake Trace. There were yearly contests with prizes for biggest bass and crappie.
Long time TUFF Directors Carl Woodard, Barry Butzer and other TUFF members participated in the “Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs” (HOFNAD) Program from the national Future Fishermen Foundation which was funded by a grant from the Department of Justice. The Lee County Sheriff’s Department and TUFF members would visit various ponds with the Lee County Boys & Girls Club and provide instruction and bait. Ponds included Mary Perry’s pond off Edwards Road, “Doc” Howard’s pond off Wildlife Road and three farm ponds off Chris Cole Road. Although the HOFNAD program was eliminated due to federal budget cuts, the TUFF Club continues to offer fishing lessons to Sanford community youth groups, as well as the Trace community.
From 2008 to 2014, the CTA-CTCC Joint Lake Committee was a partnership between the Carolina Trace Association and the Carolina Trace Country Club. JLC was launched so that there would be a sharing of expenses between the two entities -- a 50-50 split on much needed projects to enhance the fishery and address issues impacting the lake (which is owned by CTCC.) Most importantly, it represented thousands of hours of volunteer efforts by hundreds of Trace residents to build a sense of community between the Club and non-Club members. It was a way to improve the Lake and improve the enjoyment of the Lake, especially for those in POAs that were not bordering the lake. TUFF participation in Lake Fest and JLC Lake Trace Work Projects to enhance the fishery was high -- - especially from longtime TUFF members Ralph Newberry (NS), Karl Heidinger (GE), Buster Harrill (NS), Pepe Corello (WM), Frank Gagliano (WM), Tony Forgione (LW), and Lee Amcher (GW).
Thanks to the Carolina Trace Association, the new owners of the Carolina Trace Country Club and the Hidden Lake POA, all Trace residents (owners & renters) and Sanford clubs like 4-H and the B&G Club get to come fish at scheduled TUFF events along the entranceway bus stop turn-around, CTCC dock or the one-acre bass pond in Hidden Lake. Bait, equipment and instruction are free! The seasonal TUFF Fishing Derby has been expanded to an Adult and a Youth (16 and under) Division with 1st and 2nd Place prizes awarded in Bass, Crappie, Bream & Catfish Categories. 2016 TUFF Fishing Derby winners
Check out the TUFF Fishing Derby Winners of our Adult and Youth contests in past years to see who caught what, where, when and how! It gives you a great idea of what it’s like to fish in our very under fished Lake Trace where a sixteen pound NC STATE RECORD largemouth bass may lurk by one of the many fish havens TUFF volunteers built and dropped! Color Fish Haven Map with GPS coordinates
Since 2008 the TUFF Club has planned dozens of “Fish for Fun” lessons, adult and children’s tournaments. We hope the many new families that have moved to Trace will contact TUFF Director “Miss Libby” to get on our fishing database about upcoming events!
Today the many “fervent” fishermen of Trace continue to be guardians over the fragile ecosystem of Lake Trace. Their voices come to the Lake Trace Hotline 919-499-1300 with concerns about fish health, fish population, and water quality issues - all of which are forwarded to our local North Carolina Wildlife Commission (NCWRC) fish biologist Mike Fisk or regional manager Corey Oakley. Their contact information is:
District 4 Fisheries Biologist
NC Wildlife Resources Commission
919-758- 9024 (cell)
(Local address is 116 Sharpe Road, Sanford 27332)
Corey Oakley at email@example.com
Bass Tagging Program:
Al Zulich firstname.lastname@example.org 919-897- 2168
CharlesHolder email@example.com 919-770- 3800
If you would like to receive important information on past Lake Trace Work Projects that were done to analyze and enhance the fishery, please contact former JLC Chair and current TUFF Director Libby Bibb at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Lake Hotline 919-499- 1300. These reports include: